Summer 2023 hair color trends: 9 key looks to know for the season ahead

We asked expert colorists to share their summer 2023 hair color trend predictions...

Collage of Margot Robbie, Zendaya, and Florence Pugh to illustrate summer 2023 hair color trends
(Image credit: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic, FOX Image Collection, and Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images)

The weather is (gradually) getting warmer and the days are getting longer. So we’re thinking ahead to the summer 2023 hair color trends to inspire a seasonal freshen-up to our looks.

Do you feel like there are more 2023 hair trends than in previous years? That’s because today’s technology allows for much faster, more dramatic color changes. “The reason that we're flipping from one thing to another is down to the technical possibility,” explains Zoë Irwin, editorial color and trend ambassador for Matrix. “You couldn't work in this way as a colorist a decade ago because of things we take for granted now, like bonding, which strengthens the hair as you color it." At home, bond builders for hair are also more readily available for consumers to maintain their hair's condition between DIY coloring. 

If you've been thinking about making a change to your signature shade or simply want to know what summer hairstyles 2023 has to offer, we asked the industry’s leading experts to break down the trends that are proving popular in salons. Here are their predictions for the hair color ideas that’ll be huge in the coming season.

1. All things brunette

Penelope Cruz

(Image credit: Pascal Le Segretain/Getty Images)

Summer might be synonymous with highlights and beachy blondes, but other color palettes, including brunette, are predicted to be equally popular as summer 2023 hair color trends. "Brown is going to be the big color trend this summer; from fawn pale browns just darker than the beige colorway we've seen recently, to rich chocolate and deep mahogany,” says Adam Reed, Founder of ARKIVE Headcare and the ARKIVE by Adam Reed salon. 

“We're going to be seeing really beautiful palettes of every shade of brown this season. What's so great about this is that it's giving people the opportunity to get their hair back in great condition."

Our beauty editor recommends...


ARKIVE The Good Habit Hybrid Oil | RRP: $15 / £14

Keep your brunette glossy by applying this lightweight blend of baobab and jojoba oils to damp hair pre-blowdrying. 

2. Barbie Blonde

Gwen Stefani

(Image credit: Dimitrios Kambouris/Getty Images for The Met Museum/Vogue)

Blonde hair ideas never really go out of fashion, but a certain movie has put it at the forefront of our minds. "I think we’ll see lots of clients requesting Barbie bleach blonde this summer after a long grey winter, swapping low-maintenance balayage for a more dramatic blonde, à la Gwen Stefani,” says Ami King, signature colorist at Gielly Green. “I’m all for super blonde as long as the condition is not compromised – nothing brightens you up as much as a baby blonde set of highlights!”

Our beauty editor recommends…


Olaplex No.3 Hair Perfector Treatment | RRP: $30 / £28

The original take-home bond-building treatment, Olaplex's patented technology helps to repair broken bonds in the hair, particularly useful if you like a Barbie-esque bleach blonde. 

3. Curlyage

Halle Berry

(Image credit: Daniele Venturelli/Getty Images)

Balayage on curly hair, which John Alfred, colorist at Hershesons Salon nicknames "curlyage", is set to be one of the biggest summer 2023 hair color trends. "This is visually picking up curls that are naturally hit by the sun and painting them to enhance what the sun does," he explains. 

"If your hair's not been colored before you can use high lift tint in some cases, so you don't even have to use bleach. If you want it to be brighter, or if there's previous color on the hair, you can use bleach and a bond builder to keep the hair in the best condition and keep the curl pattern strong."


Imbue Curl Restoring Intensive Mask | RRP: $19.99 / £12.99

A deeply nourishing protein-rich mask that works on all curl types to add moisture and definition. 

4. The pink palette

Marion Cotillard

(Image credit: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic)

Not quite ready for the other bold color trend of the summer, blue gray hair? Try pink instead, which is essentially a neutral now. “Pinks have basically started to transcend seasons,” Irwin told us at a recent color trends talk. “It's now to do with the pigment of that pink each season. It's become the new blonde as it's been in for a really long time."

The entire pink spectrum is trending, which is great for pastel fans, but don't be afraid to go bold with your look. "On the rise in a really big way are magenta qualities and vibrancy," she continues. "We're in an age when we talk about digital hair color – the reason that everything is more pigmented is that we're viewing it on a screen and it's popping."

Our beauty editor recommends...


Matrix Keep Me Vivid Colour Enhancing Shampoo | RRP: $20 / £14.50

A gentle formula that works to lock in color and prevent fade, this shampoo gently cleanses to help maintain vibrancy. 

5. 90s 'rooty' blonde

Florence Pugh

(Image credit: Kevin Mazur/Getty Images)

Grown-out, lived-in, grungey blonde – the opposite to Barbie – is also a key summer 2023 hair color trend, a look Irwin likens to Kurt Cobain. "A lot of people have grown out their color in the past few years, but with summer coming I think we will see blondes going for a natural 'rooty' bright-toned blonde," says Alex Brownsell, co-founder of Bleach London. 

"This is achieved through dip lights – ask your stylist for highlights that are slightly teased at the roots, so you get all the color from the highlights but starting just off the root. This gives dimension to the color while also being super low-maintenance as the soft grow-out with all of the water months. I recommend getting these topped up in the salon every 3-6 months."

Our beauty editor recommends...


BLEACH London Reincarnation Mask | RRP: $24.24 / £18

Brownsell recommends the Reincarnation line, a range of bond-restoring products – a weekly treatment mask is especially a must for blondes. 

6. Red hair


(Image credit: FOX Image Collection via Getty Images)

They say that there's a shade of red to suit everyone, so summer 2023 might just be the perfect time for you to give it a try. "Red hair ideas can be anything from something that's quite bright and fashionable or something that's quite deep and rich," says Alfred. "Red looks good on people with darker skin tones or lighter skin tones. It can be all one – more of a fashion statement – or you can have it lighter towards the ends for a softer look." 

He also stresses that not every hair transformation has to involve bleach: "Again, you don't necessarily have to use bleach if you've got dark hair; you can lift to a red with a tint, without the bleach."


Davines OI Liquid Luster | RRP: $53 / £36 

Perfect for keeping a freshly-colored red glossy, this liquid treatment imparts dazzling shine and softness. 

7. Freehand highlights

Margot Robbie at the 2023 Met Gala

(Image credit: Jeff Kravitz/FilmMagic via Getty Images)

Debating highlights vs balayage? This clever new technique may just offer the best of both worlds. "This is a technique I do all the time and it's something not many people have heard about," Alfred explains. "It's hand-painted highlights, a take on the traditional foil technique, a surface painting technique. You get blonde to the roots but you get a little bit more depth than with a foil. It grows back softer, and it's blonde and striking and beautiful."

Our beauty editor recommends...


Kérastase Blonde Absolu Ultraviolet Shampoo | RRP: $40 / £27.15

One of the go-to purple shampoos on the market for keeping brassy tones at bay in blonde hair. 

8. Peach rose

Busy Philipps

(Image credit: Udo Salters/Patrick McMullan via Getty Images)

2022's copper obsession is predicted to become softer and more peachy for the summer 2023 hair color trends. "This golden, strawberry blonde is a soft, honey blonde with pinky-orange undertones that can be tailored to suit any hair type and skin tone," says Brownsell.

"After the copper craze dominated hair trends over the last year, our clients are opting for a more cinnamon-spiked blonde coming into the summer. We love a mix of Awkward Peach and Rose for lighter blonde clients, or if your hair is darker blonde try Burnt Peach mixed with Rose Conditioner to give a soft coral hue."


Bleach London Awkward Peach Shampoo | RRP: $12 / £7.50

Along with the accompanying conditioner, this peach-toned shampoo deposits color to help build or maintain your shade. 

9. The bold money piece

Serena Williams

(Image credit: Aaron J. Thornton/Getty Images)

90s-inspired, face-framing money piece hair highlights are here to stay. "This one is for clients that want the most minimal maintenance,” says King. “I think many people are on a budget due to the cost of living crisis and will want to be bright without costly upkeep. Achieve this by really investing in [highlighting] just the money piece – the hair around the front of your face – and keep the rest of the hair natural and low-key. You don’t always need a full head of highlights to keep your color feeling fresh!"

Our beauty editor recommends...


Color Wow Dream Filter | RRP: $24 / £26 

A pre-shampooing treatment that removes minerals from hard water that can affect your hair color — helping to keep it bright and shiny. 

Lucy Abbersteen

Lucy is a UK-based beauty journalist who has written for titles including Marie Claire, Glamour and OK!, as well as contributing to woman&home. Her work covers everything from expert skin and haircare advice to beauty trends and reviews of the latest products. During her career she regularly speaks to the industry's leading hairdressers, dermatologists and make-up artists, has covered backstage at London Fashion Week and interviewed many a celeb about their beauty routine.